NRP Policy Board Candidates at a Glance

Al Bangoura

Occupation: Recreation Supervisor - Powderhorn Community Center
Address: 3417 45th Avenue South (55406)
Neighborhood of Residence: Howe
Years in Neighborhood: 4 years
Phone: 612-728-3892

  1. How have your life experiences prepared you to be a neighborhood representative?
    My experience over nine years with the Minneapolis Park and Recreation board has prepared me to be a neighborhood representative. I have had the opportunity to manage and lead four recreation centers within four Minneapolis communities, i.e. Webber Community, Audubon, Matthews in the Seward community, and Powderhorn. While at Matthews, I began to collaborate and develop partnerships within the community and worked closely with the Seward Neighborhood Group. I conducted a seminar on partnerships and collaborations at the Minnesota Recreation and Park Association (MPRA) conference. In addition, the Minneapolis Center for Neighborhoods recognized me with a Public Partnership (PUPA) award.

  2. What do you consider to be the strengths and weaknesses of the NRP?
    A major strength of NRP is it allows neighborhoods the opportunity for to have direct influence into how their communities are going to be structured and how funds are going to be spent in their communities.

    One of my concerns is that the participation level from the neighborhoods is not as diverse as I think it can be.

  3. How have you participated in your neighborhood organization and its NRP process?
    I am not currently involved in Howe, the community where I live. However, I am actively involved in the community in which I work.

    Within the Powderhorn community, I have built partnerships with community organizations such as Powderhorn Park Neighborhood Association (PPNA). The Powderhorn Community elected me as an executive board member for PPNA in September 2001 and I am actively involved with this organization and they are a key partner with me as I plan the programs at Powderhorn Community Center. In addition, I was part of the writing group for the Powderhorn NRP Phase II plan and its asset-mapping strategies.

  4. How do you plan to maintain a relationship with the neighborhoods you would represent if elected?
    I will partner with Longfellow Community Council (LCC) and work within their 5-year strategic plan. I would like to attend an LCC quarterly meeting to get feedback from the LCC board.

  5. Name one thing you would like to work on if elected.
    I would like to work on neighborhood development within Howe. I would to encourage more neighborhood participation. Longfellow will be affected by the Lake Street Development, the Midtown Greenway Corridor and LRT. I can bring my experience from working in Powderhorn to my role as a representative from Howe community.

  6. Why are you running for a neighborhood representative seat on the Policy Board?
    I want to be a neighborhood representative on the NRP policy board to broaden my scope of Minneapolis communities. In addition, I believe it is important to be involved in the neighborhood that you live and to help the neighborhood in its mission and goals. I value the partnerships and being a community liaison.

  7. Please list any community-based organizations with which you are currently involved.
    • Powderhorn Park Neighborhood Association (PPNA)
    • Minnesota Renaissance Initiative

  8. Please list all current paid and unpaid affiliations.
    • MPLS Park & Recreation Board employee
    • Exectuive Board Member, Powderhorn Park Neighborhood Association
    • Chair, Minnesota Renaissance Initiative